Let’s say you have a business target that’s out of your network. How are you going to meet them? Cold calling isn’t likely to work considering the fact that only 1% of cold calls result in a client meeting. You can’t just send an email and hope it makes it past the spam filter. You don’t have any mutual connections you can leverage. So, what are you left to do?
In business, strategic events can help you open all kinds of doors that ordinarily may not be open to you.
Meet Raunuk Wahiwala, Introhive’s new business development and events consultant for the EMEA market. Raunuk has spent the last 10 years in and around the legal sector originally practising as a property solicitor, and more recently driving social networking events, promoting briefings and partner events for some of the biggest brands in the industry.
If you want to elevate your brand to the next level and also take your pipeline to new heights, Raunuk’s approach to events can help get you there.
The Right Atmosphere for Business Development
Raunuk explains that business events aren’t just about putting you in the right room with the right people, but it’s also about placing you in the right atmosphere.
As she shared with us, “Stand alone networking events are relaxed and social, they allow people to build professional relationships, explore common ground, and consider related business opportunities in a relaxed, non-pushy environment .”
And because most people come to an industry event with business on the brain, she also points out that the individuals you meet will probably have goals that align with your own, meaning they are open to hearing about you, your business, and your product or service.
“For example, when I was practicing as a property solicitor, I would want to attend networking events to meet agents, brokers, investors, developers, lenders, etc., because that’s where potential business was for me. Rather than pay a fee for these introductions—in return for a referral—I could offer my own legal services, introduce them to other business owners or connect them to useful contacts within my network. It’s a casual ground for mutual business referrals and partner success,” Raunuk explains.
Raunuk took this concept further and decided to host her own business development and networking events that produced successful results.
Strategic business events not only help you reach and discover new targets, but they also help accelerate agreements by providing a candid, convenient atmosphere. It is through this social environment that business development professionals can form stronger relationships and partnerships that lead to better business results.
Increases Your Knowledge
Following best practices is a best practice in and of itself. If you notice a competitor is succeeding with a tactic you’ve never tried, it’s within your company’s best interest to follow suit. But becoming aware of these best practices is sometimes easier said than done. And how can you be sure that you’ve uncovered all of the knowledge that you can? This is where Raunuk sees major benefits in learning events.
“Learning events allow businesses and professionals to learn something new that’s happening in the industry or within their field,” she starts. “These events also happen within your peer group. This way you can discover what success they are seeing and why, increasing your knowledge and experience.”
Knowledge is one of the few unlimited resources we have. No matter what your business is, there is always an opportunity to learn more. Events afford you—and your clients—with the opportunity to do so in a relevant manner, according to Raunuk. And with more knowledge under your belt, you can make more strategic decisions or utilize new tactics that help you reach your business goals.
Businesses can use these types of learning events to their advantage, by not only educating customers, clients, and prospects about topical market issues, but also by showcasing their product and service in this context. For example, how the product/service can help overcome common industry challenges, deal with problem areas, or improve working practices.
Extend Your Reach
How likely is it that you’ve identified every prospect you want to target for your company? Chances are, there are plenty of prospects floating under your radar that you have yet to discover. Raunuk has a solution to uncovering those prospects, as well.
“Events are a platform for businesses to broadcast a message and enable you to share it with a broad range of audiences in one go ,” Raunuk claims.
Instead of going out and hunting for those potential prospects yourself (without really knowing who you’re hunting for), events help extend your brand’s reach and bring those individuals to your front door. Through strategic event marketing, more people are exposed to your brand and are brought into your domain. At an event, you can also enable your existing customers and clients to help promote your business. Raunuk cites numerous examples of existing customers selling to prospects at an event.
“You could get anywhere from 30-70 people in one room hearing what you have to say. And it’s a controlled environment. They get to hear your story in your own words, and in many cases directly from your customer’s mouth. That’s powerful,” she says.
With more people hearing your message and understanding your value, more business opportunities will become available to you.
Partners Raise Your Business Profile
According to Raunuk, the impact on your brand image is a frequently overlooked benefit of an event. When done correctly and with the right people, an event could boost your reputation when breaking into a new market.
“When you find the right event partner, your exposure grows, your resources grow, your marketing grows. Having your name next to a respected, successful brand not only makes the event more successful, but also elevates your brand to their level,” Raunuk said.
In finding another big-name brand to partner with, you can tie the two brands together for a larger outcome. If you can both become advocates for each other’s brand, you can only imagine the influence this would have on prospective clients but also on existing clients as well.
Drive Your Business and Revenue Forward
Events have the power to fuel your business development—something that Raunuk is already doing here at Introhive. If you’re already involved in strategic events for your brand, find out how to track your success with this event reporting breakdown.